A MAN who attempted to break into a house while a mother and her young child were at home and then burgled a convent has been jailed for four years.

Elroy McArthur tried to break into the house on Woodland Road, in Darlington, on April 23 this year but was unsuccessful.

Later that afternoon he burgled a convent, making off with a substantial amount of property.

Officers arrested the 41-year-old the following day on Victoria Road, in Darlington, where he was found in possession of some of the stolen property. He was charged with burglary and attempted burglary.

McArthur pleaded guilty to the offences and appeared at Teesside Crown Court last week where he was jailed for four years.

PC Paul Cooper, from Darlington Priority Crime Team, said: “McArthur is a career criminal who has caused untold misery and hurt to countless victims in the Darlington area.

“Everyone should be able to feel safe in their own home, which is why we work extremely hard to catch criminals like McArthur who think it is acceptable to break into people’s homes and steal their hard-earned possessions.

“We are pleased that he is now behind bars and hope this provides the people of Darlington with some reassurance that he will be off the streets for a number of years.”